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BRIEFLY / EARNINGS

At a Glance

February 23, 2001

Other earnings, excluding one-time gains or charges unless noted, include:

* J.C. Penney Co. reported a fourth-quarter loss of $2 million, or 3 cents a share compared with a year-earlier operating profit of $126 million, or 45 cents, as sales declined 0.8% to $9.75 billion. Analysts had expected a deeper loss of 5 cents. The retailer also said it expects earnings for the first quarter and full year to exceed analyst forecasts, but said it will take two to five years before profit returns to competitive levels.

* Liz Claiborne Inc. said fourth-quarter profit edged down 0.4% to $49.6 million, or 96 cents a share, matching analyst expectations. Sales increased 11% to $754 million.

* Nordstrom Inc. reported a 59% drop in earnings for the fourth quarter to $27.05 million, or 20 cents a share, hurt by heavy markdowns as consumers slowed spending. Sales rose 7.8% to $66.55 million. The Seattle-based retailer had said Jan. 5 that it expected earnings of 18 cents to 23 cents a share. Analysts had a mean estimate of 19 cents, according to First Call/Thomson Financial.

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